It was late autumn 2018, I recently started at my new job, and the workload was getting really heavy. I wanted to keep working on music no matter what, so there was a certain stubbornness to my music from that period. With Assemblage, there was also a little bit of insolence: I didn't like any of the guitar quintets from the standard repertoire, so I decided I would make my own.
The melody starts as a bare outline, but after a simple magic spell is cast, it gets many repeats, each time with more and more details added to it, until it's an endless arabesque of chords and heavily ornamented notes. The string quartet starts as an influence, but is eventually falling under the same spell, and in the end the strings are gracefully doing the guitar's bidding. A friend suggested to me that this is a wish being made, and then granted: the string quartet is the circumstances of life, which are influences at first, but by the end life is completely controlled by the strength of the wish.
The title doesn't refer to the art form, but to assemblage point, a concept from Carlos Castaneda's books which I was a big fan of when I was a teenager. By shifting one's assemblage point, one could perceive the physical world in completely new ways – and interact with it differently, too. Another piece with some Castaneda influence is the electric guitar duet Sin aliento, completed a few years prior. And later, in 2020, I explored the main melody in a different way in The Nature of Desire for solo alto flute.
(For technical reasons, the score of Assemblage isn't available here at present time. Please contact me if interested.)